- Goodgym combines getting fit with doing good in Cardiff
- Launch run will see runners lay a disabled access path for Canton Community Hall Gardens and run 4k
- First group outside of England launches at Cardiff’s Old Library, The Hayes, and will take place every Tuesday 18:15
CARDIFF, MAY 23rd 2017 – GOODGYM – the community of runners who combine getting fit with doing good – is launching in Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan this month (May 23).
Members of a new GoodGym group in Cardiff, which has a unique approach to building community cohesion, promoting fitness and reducing social isolation, will stop off on their runs to do physical tasks for community organisations and to support isolated older people with weekly social visits and one-off tasks they can’t do on their own.
The group will meet every Tuesday at 6.15pm, in the foyer of the Yr Hen Lyfrgell (The Old Library) in town, before heading off for a 4km run and to complete a task for the evening.
The inaugural run on 23rd May will see the runners run 2k to Canton Community Hall where they will be helping Canton Grows Wild to create a disabled access path to the gardens, plant 100 plants, pull up weeds and install a brand new sign. The task will involve the runners shifting 1 tonne of rocks and gravel using buckets and wheelbarrows for an intensive workout before running 2k back.
In addition to the weekly group run, some GoodGym runners will also be paired with an isolated older person and commit to a weekly social visit and/or help with one-off household tasks. The GoodGym befriending scheme has been proven to reduce loneliness and improve wellbeing.
Over 320 people have already signed up to the Cardiff group, with 21 founding members.
Ben Annear, GoodGym’s Cardiff and Vale of South Glamorgan’s lead trainer, commented:
“It’s fantastic to have GoodGym come to Cardiff, the heart of Wales. I am most looking forward to helping runners succeed in their fitness goals, whilst encouraging participation in charitable efforts that aid the Cardiff community. We have already received overwhelming levels of support in Cardiff, from both runners wanting to sign up and community projects wanting our help and so it’s really exciting to think about the difference GoodGym running club will make over the coming weeks, months and years in Cardiff.”
GoodGym Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan is supported by the Cardiff and Vale of Glamorgan Integrated Health and Social Care Partnership and has received support from the Welsh Government’s Integrated Care Fund.
Age Connects Cardiff & The Vale, the council and Age Cymru act as referrers for linking older people to GoodGym for coach runs and missions.
Maria Battle, Chair of Cardiff & Vale University Health Board, said: “On behalf of the Partnership we are delighted that GoodGym is launching in Cardiff. We are fully committed to promoting active lifestyles as part of our strategy for keeping people well. What is fantastic about this initiative is that this is combined with supporting older people in our communities and helping ensure that people can build friendships and retain their independence living at home.
Mathew Coffin, Service Manager at Age Connects Cardiff & Vale, GoodGym’s referral partner in the area, said: “Loneliness and Isolation is a significant problem for many older people in Wales, Age Connects Cardiff & Vale is delighted to work in partnership with Good Gym to help those in need. Getting fit whilst helping others is the perfect combination and an inspired idea.”
GoodGym runners have carried out over 50,000 good deeds to help older people and community organisations throughout the UK. GoodGym operates in 31 areas nationwide and aims to launch in every city in the UK by 2018.
GoodGym Cardiff group runs take place every Tuesday 18:15 from The Old Library. The runs are free to attend and more information can be found at www.goodgym.org.